Phils, Jays Battle to a Draw

The Phillies and Blue Jays played a wild game, but decided nine innings was enough. With the score tied 9-9, the two teams decided to end the game there, rather than go into extra innings. After all, the Phillies had a plane to catch as they head into Philly for their final two exhibition games of the spring.

Jim Thome launched a two-run shot and Shane Victorino delivered a game-tying ninth inning homerun helping the Phillies to a 9-9 tie with the Toronto Blue Jays.

Victorino learned earlier in the day that he had cleared waivers and that the Dodgers had declined to take him back from the Phillies. With that news, he accepted an assignment to AAA Scranton, but was with the big league club for the final Florida game of the spring.

As for Thome, he was playing in his second game since missing time with a sore back. He finished the day with two hits and scored two runs.

The Phillies also got a homerun from Jose Offerman, his first of the spring. Indications are that the switch-hitting Offerman has made the club after an impressive spring with the Phillies as a non-roster invitee.

Mike Bacsik, who will start the season at Scranton, started and threw four shutout innings for the Phillies. Ryan Madson was hit for five earned runs in 2/3 of an inning of work.

The Phillies are off on Friday and will work out at Citizens Bank Park before playing the Detroit Tigers on Saturday and the Baltimore Orioles on Sunday in exhibition games. The regular season starts Monday when the Phillies open with an afternoon game against the Washington Nationals.

Roster Moves:

The Phillies optioned Marlon Byrd to AAA Scranton, even though he had one of the better springs of any Phillies player. The move seems to signal that utility man Jose Offerman has made the club after also putting up impressive numbers this spring. Offerman got the nod because of his track record for pinch-hitting and because he's a switch-hitter.

Shane Victorino will also start the season with Scranton. The Dodgers declined to take him back after he had cleared waivers earlier in the day. Victorino was offered a minor league assignment and accepted.

Minor League News:

Sean Gamble has been impressive this spring. He delivered a two-run triple Thursday in an 8-3 win for the Phillies Class-A minor leaguers over the Yankees prospects. Gamble, a native of Englewood, New Jersey, could start the year at Lakewood. Sam Orr and Jason Jaramillo each contributed two hits.

Carlos Carrasco threw five innings, giving up three earned runs on six hits and five walks. He also struck out six.

The BlueClaws open their fifth season at home on April 7th against Lake County.

Philly Baseball Insider Top Stories